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As I look, as I listen, I am driven to exclaim, “Surely He hath borne our griefs and carried our
He was wounded for our transgressions and bruised for our iniquities. The Lord hath laid on Him the iniquity of us all.”? In no other way are His sufferings explicable. To fulfil these words of ancient prophecy, He can endure no greater, no keener anguish. If this is not the explanation of His desertion on the Cross, then the Cross, instead of declaring that God has not forsaken the human race, notwithstanding all its crimes, seems to be an appalling testimony to all nations and to all centuries, that not even the purest goodness can secure for One who has assumed our nature the strength and the peace which come from the perpetual manifestation of God's presence and love. Instead of revealing the infinite love of God refusing to forsake those who have sinned, it is an awful proof that He may forsake in the hour of their utmost and sorest need those who have perfectly loved and perfectly obeyed Him. Either the Death of Christ was the Atonement for human sin, or else it fills me with terror and despair.
1 Isa. lv. 4-6
THE FACT OF THE ATONEMENT : THE TESTIMONY OP
E have now to inquire whether our Lord gave
any account of His Death which at all explains the mysterious facts which we considered in the previous Lecture, and to which the Evangelists give so much prominence.
Had He been silent on the relation of His sufferings to human redemption, it would have remained true that His Death was present to His mind from the very commencement of His ministry; that when it came near, it filled Him with dismay; and that on the cross He was forsaken by the Father. But He was not silent. Nor are we left to discover His inner thought concerning His Death from obscure allusions to it of ambiguous meaning, or from words spoken incidentally and suggested by circumstances which we might call accidental, or from parables which might be of doubtful interpretation, or from illustrations derived from Jewish institutions about whose precise significance there might be interminable controversy. It was of infinite importance that there should be no misapprehension of His meaning, and He therefore selected for the full and